Monday, August 10, 2009

The 2009 AVD Oldtimer Grand Prix at the Nurburgring - great cars and exciting races

For once I have swapped the drivers perspective with the spectators perspective!
Last weekend again the German AVD organized the Oldimer Grand Prix at the Nurburgring. It's said to be the worldwide biggest event of its kind, with 650 cars and 900+ drivers it's definitely impressive.
Well, the weather wasn't that great this year, with lots of fog causing the organizers to cancel a number of races on Saturday and delaying the program on Sunday by quite a bit.
But nevertheless superior fields and cars were offered to the spectator.
When have you last seen a Mercedes-Sauber C9 in action? The two Australians Rob Sherrard and Wayne Park brought the car to Europe to race it against some of the other remaining Group C cars of the period. But the rest of the group was clearly no match to the C9, it almost rounded the rest of the field, delivering very quick lap times. The Group C was guest at the OGP for the first time, and I am sure, all of the visitors wish them to come back next year!
But there were many other exciting races to be seen. The historic Formula 1 races were great to watch, listening and smelling the Maseratis, the Coopers and the early Lotus cars was just very entertaining.
Interesting sports cars and touring cars were there too, delivering hard but fair races and showing the limits of both the drivers and the cars.
And then of course were also the CanAm racers in the Orwell Supersports showcasing what it means when huge engines meet maximum downforce. It's unbelievable how these "big bangers" accelerate on the straights and how high the limit is in the curves. But it's even more impressive to see, how the two liter cars are almost able to follow the 8.8 liter monsters in real (racing) live.
The Oldtimer Grand Prix offered something to everybody. And the stories told by the speakers helped to survive long breaks due to the weather conditions or other issues. I learned quite a bit about the Opel history and why Opels were so popular in the 60ies and 70ies. It's sad to see that due to recent events a brand such as Opel always gets destroyed.
Finally the Motor Klassik subscribers were showing their less racy but still mostly attractive oldtimers. This was an opportunity to see cars such as the Citroën-Maserati SM, vintage Corvettes, a whole range of Porsches and even a Mk 1 Golf.
After two days of watching 15-20 races you actually have been able to screen quite a bit of motor sports history and I am sure most of the spectators will return next year for the 38th Oldtimer Grand Prix.

1 comment:

John L said...

Rob Sherrard has a fantastic collection of cars and Wayne Park is a pretty handy driver. It would have been great to have been there.